Lega Nazionale Professionisti

The Lega Nazionale Professionisti (Italian for National League of Professionals), commonly known as Lega Calcio (Football League), was the governing body that ran the two highest football divisions in Italy, namely Serie A and Serie B, from 1946 to 2010. It has ceased to exist on 1 July 2010, following a split between Serie A and Serie B clubs, which led to the creation of two new leagues, the Lega Serie A and Lega Serie B respectively.

The Lega Calcio was founded as the Lega Nazionale (National League) in 1946, after the Second World War, and its name was changed in 1960, shortly after Italy fully recognized professional status for the players of the top divisions. Its predecessor during the fascist era, between 1926 and 1944, was the Direttorio Divisioni Superiori (Directory of Higher Divisions), a league whose president was appointed by the FIGC. Earlier still before, the first football league in Italy was the Lega Nord (Northern League), which was composed of the major clubs of Northern Italy from 1921 to 1926.

Promotion and relegation between the divisions were a central feature of the league: at the end of the season the bottom clubs of Serie B switched with the top clubs of the Lega Pro (or its predecessors), thus integrating the League into the Italian football league system. Besides, the Lega Calcio also organized the main Italian cup competition, the Coppa Italia and the Supercoppa Italiana.

Read more about Lega Nazionale Professionisti:  2010 Split, List of Lega Nazionale Professionisti Presidents

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